Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The English is Coming!: How One Language is Sweeping the World” as Want to Read:
The English is Coming!: How One Language is Sweeping the World
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The English is Coming!: How One Language is Sweeping the World

3.1  ·  Rating details ·  73 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
English has fast become the number one language for everything from business and science, diplomacy and education, entertainment and environmentalism to socializing and beyond—virtually any human activity unfolding on a global scale. Worldwide, nonnative speakers of English now outnumber natives three to one; and in China alone, more people use English than in the United S ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 14th 2010 by Touchstone
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The English is Coming!, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The English is Coming!

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Scott
Sep 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
It's an interesting read for anyone who is curious about the history or future of the English language, or for anyone who wants a better understanding of how languages evolve. The author proves herself to be extremely knowledgable.
However, the book ends on a sore note with the far-fetched predictions in the final chapter on how the English language might change. Sure it will change substantially, but the author is dreaming up some pretty wild guesses here. She forgets to take into account that E
...more
Justin
Sep 11, 2011 rated it liked it
3 stars for the tremendous amount of research that went into this book, but not for how much I enjoyed reading it. Very dry at points, and there is only so much language-lover humor that I can handle in one sitting. At many points, this book became redundant. It just repeated itself over and over again, quite redundantly ;-)
Plus, I found the author's guesses about possible future changes to the language quite silly. However, her ideas on ways that English could be simplified (without adding fore
...more
J DeMarco
Jul 05, 2011 rated it liked it
A fascinating journey of where English came from as a language, where it is now, and perhaps from this where Global English is heading.
Lois
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This lively and informative account of the origins and development of the English language is written so fluently and well that one can read the entire work in a single sitting, which is definitely not what one can say about many works of nonfiction. The field of Linguistics has always appeared to be somewhat daunting to the non-academic, but Leslie Dunton-Downer’s smooth-flowing and vibrant text conveys profound insights into the etymologies of more than 30 words in such a way that she makes he ...more
Sara
Nov 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
Despite the apparent poor grammar of the title--it really isn't since English refers to the language, not the people--this is a fantastic book for a word-lover. Not only does the author go through the history of the English language but she also chooses 30 everyday words and shows their history and how they were adapted into our current speech. And since English is now the most commonly spoken language throughout the world, even in China, which means that there are more non-native English speake ...more
Lauren Boulton
Mar 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
A fun read for the logophile. While reading, I found myself more interested in the history of certain words than the idea of a global English or conjectures on what this global English might be like. Other reviewers are correct: this book is repetitive. The final chapter had so many similar paragraphs I found myself skimming. She definitely could have finished stronger. However, most of the book was entertaining and read rather quickly. This is not a waste of time. Informed author with a worship ...more
Rebecca
Dec 21, 2010 rated it it was ok
This book was okay; I found it quite uneven as far as holding my interest. Some sections were very interesting, and I will happily acknowledge this; others seriously dragged, at least for me, and I had a hard time finishing the final section of "predictions" (really more like wild guesses) about how English may change in the future (though I did finish it eventually). I am always on the lookout for fun books about the English language, but I have read more enjoyable ones than this.
Colleen Semanek
Aug 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
I found this book to be fascinating. I learned so much... But like so many other readers, I thought it just got weird when she stared talking about the future of the language - with specifics. I know it was hypothetical, and she clearly presented it as such, but the specific nature of it threw me off.
Lili
Mar 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Lili by: Karlene Jennings
Not at all what I was expecting. The "word histories" were an odd mix of esoteric academic vocabulary and folksy breezy writing style. The thought experiment of the future of Global English was too drawn out to maintain my interest, and again littered with attempts at folksy style and personal opinions. I'm mailing it back to Karlene!!!!
William
May 03, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
Entertaining, as my cover blurb states, but hardly suspenseful as it also suggests. Perhaps I have read too many of these types of books and simply want more interesting conjecturing on where English is actually going.
Ash Crowe
Jan 13, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013
I should have loved this book, I usually adore this type of books. Instead I found it rather boring and often flipped ahead a couple of pages when it dragged spectacularly.
Jen
May 18, 2011 rated it liked it
Pretty interesting if you like reading about the history of words and language, and enjoy a few jokes thrown in here and there.
Janusz
Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Janusz by: mum
one of those 'hungry-for-more-of-the-same-though-not-necessarily-by-the-same-author' situations...
Lacy Garrison
too boring to finish
Laura
Jun 16, 2012 rated it it was ok
The format was tedious and the subject matter interesting but not all that compelling.
Sarah
rated it liked it
Mar 19, 2012
Chris Field
rated it liked it
Oct 26, 2013
Lindsay (LindsayHWrites)
rated it really liked it
Oct 19, 2016
Craig
rated it really liked it
Apr 04, 2015
Leesly Leon
rated it it was amazing
Dec 28, 2015
Alexis
rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2012
Miriam
rated it liked it
Feb 20, 2012
Libby
rated it really liked it
Jun 17, 2013
Travis
rated it it was ok
Dec 05, 2016
Brian Kerr
rated it liked it
Aug 26, 2011
Neža
rated it liked it
Mar 02, 2014
Natalia
rated it liked it
Mar 17, 2013
Eric Malone
rated it liked it
Sep 24, 2011
Aglaia
rated it it was ok
Oct 23, 2010
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »